By Ben Westhoff and Sarah Purkrabek
By Steve Brennan
By Joseph Hess
By Allsion Babka
By Kelsey McClure
By RFT Music
By Christian Schaeffer
By Gabriel San Roman
"Itineraries are not easily kept and will drive you crazy at this thing, but I offer these picks to see. Many I have been meaning to see for a while. Others I've had live on my show because I think they are really doing something great. The rest I've just seen and been impressed by over and over again. I may wander off and see some band I've never heard of. Who knows?"
Nick's going to be a busy man catching sets by Ellen the Felon, Dogtown Allstars, Funky Butt Brass Band, Sleepy Kitty, Black James, Theodore, the Blind Eyes, Karate Bikini, Warm Jets USA, Pretty Little Empire, Magic City, Kentucky Knife Fight, Troubadour Dali and the Humanoids.
But he finds a serious logjam at 10:45 p.m. "This is a tough one, so I'm floating venues," Acquisto says. "I'll give a KDHX T-shirt to the first person to find me at one of these shows [Syna So Pro, Doom Town, Bo and the Locomotive, Tight Pants Syndrome, Bunnygrunt or the Blind Nils]. Good luck, and try not to think too much about what you may or may not be missing. "
Brian McCormac is the manager and talent buyer for the Old Rock House in downtown St. Louis.
"RFT has helped music lovers out by not making them leave the main stage for a few hours to take in some of STL's finest. Kicking the day off is an interchanging two-and-a-half hours of bass-driven house music from the London Calling DJ and the cities two funkiest groove outfits Dogtown Allstars and Funky Butt Brass Band. If you have never seen Funky Butt, do not miss this chance. Make sure to stick around for the infectious sounds of Sleepy Kitty and members of STL's freshest hip-hop collective, the Force.
"Now it's time to hop around the clubs, and RFT has done a pretty good job on not crossing over too many artists that I really want to check out. When the sun goes down you don't want to miss Theodore, 18andCounting, Teddy Presberg, the Wrek Sessions, Kentucky Knife Fight and my boys Fresh Heir. Enjoy, folks!"
Pancake Master Robert "MustardRØB" Severson, proprietor of locally based and internationally intriguing record label Pancake Productions and exclusive heir to the Googolplexia millions.
"Obviously I'll hit that main stage as early as possible. Good buddy Ellen the Felon is not only a great songstress but a cool lady and a keen participant in local music. That Dubb Nubb is playing just before the veritable "wolf pack" of other things is fortunate. I'll do my best to return to the main stage to see Sleepy Kitty afterwards.
"I keep missing Britches, so I'll hope to catch some of that before the dreaded 7 p.m. hour — dreaded because the Conformists, Black James, and Cassie Morgan and the Lonely Pine make it a tough call. I'll probably give the lion's share of that slot to the least-recently-seen Conformists. Squeeze in a little Ra Cailum before partying some with Theodore. At 8:15 p.m., I'll be going halfsies between We're Wolf and the Blind Eyes.
At 9:30 p.m., I'll try to determine what the reason for stretching one awards category into three (and then tossing some DJs and others inexplicably into the mix) was, when I go halfsies yet again, between Best One-Person Project nominee .e and Best Solo Artist (Female) nominee Beth Bombara. I'll see my buds the Breaks for as long as possible.
"Considering Bunnygrunt regularly plays a song by Tight Pants Syndrome's Tom Stephens, the Bunnygrunt/TPS simul-scheduling seems ill-advised. Have to go with my people in the Bunnygrunt, though. They're a perennial party band at the RFT showcase, and no doubt they've got something good cooking.
"Then... Scripts 'N Screwz? Union Tree Review? The Skekses? Magic City? Maybe just stay put because I'll be tired and drunk, and enjoy Kentucky Knife Fight, then close 'er out with the Humanoids?"
Brian Cohen is the founder and organizer of the LouFest Music Festival. In the '80s, he was the drummer for the punk band the Beaslies.
Cohen plans to start with a fuel up at El Borracho before he heads to 11th Street and Washington Avenue to "secure a good spot in front of the outdoor stage to get my dance on with the DJs from London Calling and the Funky Butt Brass Band," he says. "Then round it out with the indie sounds of Sleepy Kitty."
He'll also head to Rue 13 for Dubb Nubb. "This dynamic duo just competed in our high school battle of the bands and were awesome. Looking forward to hearing their full set."
Up next is Theodore. "I have heard great things about this band," says Cohen. "But this will be my first chance to see them live." After catching some of the Blind Eyes, he'll head for Pretty Little Empire. "Reviews put them somewhere between the Velvet Underground and Nick Drake, so I'm all over it." He'll end the night with Troubadour Dali — a band playing this year's LouFest.